Abortion laws in Great Britain are still fairly strict by global pro-abortion standards. In England, Scotland, and Wales the Abortion Act of 1967 stipulates that a woman may only legally kill her unborn baby up to the 24th week of pregnancy if two medical doctors say it's okay — and then only if the physical or mental health of the mother is at risk, or if the baby would be born with extreme physical or mental handicaps.
While the law has been increasingly flouted in a culture given to personal freedom and convenience, the British Medical Association (BMA), the key professional organization of doctors and medical students across the United Kingdom, has voted in favor of the decriminalization of abortion up to the 28th week of pregnancy — paving the way for “abortion on demand” across Great Britain.
After intense debate among physicians at the BMA's annual meeting in late June, delegates “voted in favor of a motion calling for a change in the law,” reported the UK's Daily Mail. “The BMA will now adopt this stance, which would allow terminations right up until full-term, as its formal policy.”
The UK's Daily Telegraph reported that with the vote, the BMA would now “lobby the Government to abandon the current legal framework, which requires an expectant mother to convince two doctors an abortion is necessary to protect her long-term health.” The paper added that “abortions are an offense in nearly all other circumstances under the 50-year-old law, but the BMA now says the issue should become purely medical rather than criminal.”
Physicians who have a financial stake in killing pre-born babies applauded the vote, with Dr Clare Gerada, spokesman for the pro-abortion British Pregnancy Advisory Service, declaring that “for the BMA to be coming out absolutely overwhelmingly for the decriminalization of abortion, I think now politicians will have to stand up and listen and actually take action.”
By contrast, pro-life leaders across the UK condemned GMA doctors for abandoning their promise to protect and heal, with more than 1,500 UK physicians and medical students signing an open letter opposing the vote. “If these measures were to be implemented [by Parliament], it would mean the introduction of abortion for any reason, to at least 28 weeks and possibly up to birth,” read the letter. “As doctors and medical students we strongly urge the British Medical Association to reject this extreme motion.”
After the vote, Dr Anthony McCarthy of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC), the world's oldest pro-life group, said that the BMA “has betrayed all who take seriously healthcare for pregnant women in favor of an extremist agenda in line with the abortion industry's laissez faire 'up to birth' attitude to ending the lives of unborn children.” He added that “against overwhelming public opinion and against those who support women by refusing to trivialize abortion, the BMA has undermined the consciences of doctors who refuse to follow an 'autonomy' agenda that has nothing to do with good medicine and everything to do with ideology.”
Andrea Williams, CEO of the UK public policy group Christian Concern, noted that recent polling in the UK found that only one percent of women favor abortion up to birth, while 70 percent of women want the current limit of 24 weeks to be scaled back even further, and 91 percent favor an explicit ban on abortion based on gender.
“The mark of a civilized society is how it treats the most vulnerable,” said Williams. “Rather than protecting pre-born children in their mothers' wombs, the BMA has chosen to be complicit in their destruction. Those who are tasked with healing the sick have voted to kill the healthy. When our doctors display such a shocking disrespect for human life, we know we are a society in crisis.”